Thursday, March 31, 2016

The Suryagarh

In Jaisalmer, we're staying at the Suryagarh - a wonderful hotel. We had a six hour drive today across the desert and it was such a pleasure to land in this place for the next two nights. Pictures don't do it justice. Although our hotels along the way have been very good, this is in another class entirely. I'm afraid things (hotel-wise) will be going downhill from here. 

This dog knows how to live...he was cooling off in the petal strewn fountain.

Around Bikaner

Richard's photographs yesterday. 

Baby camel, several hours old.
Mandewa marketplace.
Red Fort, Bikaner.

Painting on Haveli in Mandewa.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

That's Entertainment!

This show was filming in the lobby of our hotel in Mumbai. We got caught up in the cameras and wires and mike booms while trying to check out. We'd never heard of the series, but it sounds interesting and we'll give it a try. The director was in the middle of the action...a very tall woman with rainbow dreadlocks. Turns out she's transgender and so's her brother. You can read about the Wachowskis here.

Sense8 (a play on the word sensate /ˈsɛnst/)[6] is an American science fiction drama web television series created, written and executive-produced by Lilly and Lana Wachowski and J. Michael Straczynski. The first season, consisting of 12 episodes, became available for streaming on Netflix on June 5, 2015, and has been met with favorable critical reception.

The plot revolves around eight strangers from different parts of the world who suddenly become mentally and emotionally linked. The show aims to explore subjects that its writers feel have historically not been emphasized in most science fiction shows to date,[7][8] such as politicsidentitysexualitygender and religion.[8][9]

The Wachowskis directed most of the first season, with the remainder being divided between their previous collaborators Tom TykwerJames McTeigue, and Dan Glass. The series is the first produced under the banner of Straczynski's Studio JMS. On August 8, 2015, Netflix announced that it had renewed the show for a second season.

Two Bollywood star were staying in our hotel in Mandewa while shooting a film in a fort nearby. They're very popular and people would line up to catch a glimpse of them coming and going. The Stars were waving to their fans and generally responsive. 
Crowds waiting for a glimpse outside our hotel. Every time we stepped out all the cell phones would turn toward us. 


Staying tonight in the local Maharajah's palace, now a hotel. The number of skins on the walls is incredible. They killed everything in sight. Beautiful but eerie place. 

Not the greatest shot but you can clearly see that "nothing exceeds like excess." 

Friday, March 25, 2016


The Hindi word for ingenuity is Jugaad. From Wiki:

Jugaad (alternatively Juggaar) is a colloquial Hindi and Punjabi word that can mean an innovative fix or a simple work-around, used for solutions that bend rules, or a resource that can be used as such, or a person who can solve a complicated issue.

You see it everywhere...Indians figure out how things work and when they see a need, they improvise. Taking a page out of their book, I came up with my own Jugaad invention this morning. We're on our way out of Varanesi and one never knows what kind of toilet experiences lurk ahead. Around my neck hangs the "TP Scarf" both decorative and functional. The generic name lacks pizzazz I know...perhaps "Wear & Wipe"? It's only a prototype and requires an artistic touch...perhaps a quick smear of paint swiped over it, or a fancy braid job. What do you think?

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Elephanta Island

We spent most of the day on a ferry to Elephanta Island. Nothing to do but take photos of each other. So many good looking feet on that boat! People used the return trip to catch a few zzzzz's.  

Everyone took photos !!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016


What's left to do? I guess you can spit. Everyplace else there seems to be signs saying "no spitting."

From the Ghandi home...such a wise man.

Mini dioramas in Ghandi house tell all of Ghandi's major life events.
Cloth drying at the Dhobhi Ghat, a giant outdoor laundry, where factory-made shirts are washed, along with the laundry from one and two-star hotels and "lower class" hospitals. You might find these red shirts in Target or Walmart. They're labelled, put in plastic and sent back to the factories after the work is completed at the Ghat. It looks like a horrible job, but our guide tells us they are paid well, get good medical care etc., probably because of tourist interest, the cynic in me thinks.

Victoria Terminus, main train station.

Magnificent floral arrangements at the Taj, changed every day.

At the Ghandi house.
More views of the Ghat.

Fruit man at Crawford Market.
Dabbawallas, taking a break from work, eating out of their own tiffin boxes. They deliver hot lunches everyday, hundreds of thousands of them almost mistake free. You can tell them by their white caps.